One of our current projects required managing a global process library so Visio Services seemed to be a great approach based on the interactive and metadata requirements. After some steep learning curves around the new Visio Services API we delivered a POC that was well received. The tool supports browsing, navigating, and searching for processes and their respective metadata (Title, Overview, Scenarios, Desktop Procedures, User Guides, etc.). The most valuable piece of the puzzle is the ability to link Visio shapes to an external data connection and of course be able to display this mash-up of information in the browser. Tagging SharePoint list/library/reusable content against the Visio shapes, in this case processes or process steps, provides the global operations team the ability to manage processes in a central location while also wrapping a content publishing process around the metadata. End users are presented with a dynamic user interface with hierarchical browse, diagram interaction, and filter/search capabilities. A challenging aspect of the project is driving a well defined content metadata structure. The more well defined the business process needs are the easier it will be to design the supporting metadata structure, both input and edit functionality.
I will share some of the more interesting technical components and code snipets for reference as the project progresses.
I’m interested in hearing about your experiences with the new and exciting Visio Services API. How are you stretching it’s capabilities to deliver value to customers?